As I prepared for Christmas this year, I wondered what thoughts ran through Mary’s mind as she anticipated the birth of her first child. Like all expectant mothers, she must have wondered what her child would look like, and what he would grow up to be. She must have marveled at her changing body and the new life growing and kicking in her womb. How amazed she was at the angel Gabriel’s words that her son would be great and would be called the “Son of the Most High” (Luke 1:32b). She must have been curious to know more about this new life growing within her.
If you have ever anticipated the birth of a child, you can imagine what Mary was thinking, but can you imagine how all the heavenly host must have anticipated the birth of this child? All of heaven must have held their collective breath, because the birth of this child would signal the beginning of the defeat of Satan and the eventual victory over sin and death. The angels knew how this child would look, and they knew what he would grow up to be. They knew He would look with love and compassion on the men and women created in His image. They knew he would live a sinless life, that he would give up His earthly life on a Roman cross to defeat death and sin. They knew He would do all this for us, for sinful human beings.
Can you picture how God must see us? He can see beyond the exterior, those features that show in our photographs. He sees beyond the eyes, nose, mouth, hair, coloring, age, height, and weight. The picture he sees is deep within the heart, those things that motivate our actions, whether pure or selfish. He sees the love; he sees the hatred. He sees kindness; he sees cruelty. Others can only see the outward picture, yet we must always remember that God sees the inside picture.
Think for a moment about how God and all the angels might anticipate your new life after this one has ended. Will they eagerly await your arrival? Fortunately for us, God’s great plan of salvation enables us to do more than just a photographer’s touch up on the inside picture. His grace allows our inside picture of sin and its ugliness to be transformed into a heavenly picture of perfection. Once we accept this new interior, the angels in heaven rejoice at the new spiritual birth. Then we rejoice, knowing God anticipates our birth in heaven where we will dwell as beautiful, newly created beings.
Father, thank you for the amazing spiritual birth you offer us. Your grace is truly amazing.
II Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!”